Positive Vibes – A Vision of Hope and Success.

In this gloom-laden vision of the world dominated by overpopulation, terrorism, war and environmental degradation it is occasionally good to focus on the great things that are going on:

Poverty

In the 25 years from 1980 to 2005 those living in abject poverty was reduced by 20%. We are well on the way to eradicating poverty altogether!

War

War deaths are decreasing rapidly. They have fallen from 550,000 deaths a year in 1950 to just 50,000 in 2006. The number of wars taking place have reduced as well!

Murder

The murder rate has also come down significantly. In 2012 it was 6.3 per hundred thousand. By 2015 it was down to 5.3.

Terrorism

The number of deaths from terrorism is also decreasing. In 2014 there were 43,566 deaths but by 2016 that had gone down to 34,676 deaths.

Starvation

The rate of undernourishment in Sub-Saharan Africa has also fallen notably, from 30 percent in 1990 to below 20 percent in 2015.

So why do we have this picture of gloom and despair?

It appears that the reason for our gloomy perspective is better information. Every day on the news we are regaled with stories of war, murder, terrorism, starvation and poverty. Stories that previously would have gone under the radar are now given high profile with full gory pictures and details. It creates the impression that the whole world is in crisis.

So – given our success at dealing with these problems (and not withstanding the fact that there is much that still needs doing) it bodes well for our ability to tackle the problems that are looming large:

The overpopulation crisis

Pollution and environmental degradation

The alarming rate of extinction of species

Global warming

So I look forward to the next decade as an opportunity to build on our success, bring wars to an end, take everybody out of poverty and starvation, put a stop to terrorism and reduce violence to zero. As well as that I would hope that we can start tackling conservation seriously, halt further extinctions, reduce the human global population and produce technology that does not pollute.

The future could look very rosy!

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Machete Murders – University lecturers, minority groups, secular bloggers, religious groups, westerners and now gay activists!

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Two men, including an editor of Bangladesh’s only LGBT magazine, have been hacked to death by suspected Islamist extremists.

The shouted Alahu Akbar. The seven murderers then tricked their way in. They then callously hacked to death the two men with machetes.

This is now what they do in the name of Islam.

They train young children to put on suicide vests filled with nails, screws and ball-bearings.

They rape young girls as young as nine years old.

They murder people in the cruellest most barbaric way they can devise.

They take sex slaves.

They crow on the internet about the inhuman acts of throwing people off buildings, crucifying people, beheading them publically, burning them alive, drowning them, raping, pillaging and torturing.

They show no mercy or remorse.

They believe they are acting in god’s name.

No god would ever sanction the evil these men are doing.

Their victims are bloggers, secular advocates, apostates, Shia, Yazedi, gays, and anyone who does not believe their intolerant evil doctrine.

So what is Bangladesh doing about it? What is Pakistan doing about it? What is Nigeria doing about it?

Are they hunting down these scum?

Civil Rights – The murder of Medgar Evers.

 

Medgar Evers was a Civil Rights leader in Mississippi. He campaigned for desegregation. He was involved with the desegregation of schools and colleges, desegregation of beaches, restrooms and organised boycotts. His high profile activities and leadership role made him a target for the white supremacists. They threatened to kill him if he did not stop.

 

Medgar, like so many of those Civil Rights Activists, was a brave man. He knew these were no idle threats and that if he continued to fight for freedom and justice he would most likely be murdered. It did not deter him.

 

He continued even after a car came close to running him down outside his house and a Molotov cocktail was thrown through the window of his house. He did not stop despite the risks to himself and his young family. Freedom was worth dying for.

 

Back in Mississippi the life of a black man was cheap. There was no protection from the law. People were beaten, shot and lynched with impunity. The Kl Klux Klan were rife and many of the police and judges were in the organisation. There was no protection. The black community was terrorised.

 

How many people would have the courage to continue in the face of such threats? Knowing that in the dead of night a callous murdered could set fire to your house or shoot you in your bed and there was no police to help you?

 

Medgar Evers did not flinch.

 

On June the 12th 1963, as he was getting out of his car in the drive of his house, Medgar Evers was shot in the back.

 

The coward white supremacist Byron Del La Beckwith, a member of the Klu Klux Klan, had hidden in the bushes and shot him in the back.

 

Many people wrote tributes and songs to Medgar Evers – the most important being Bob Dylan’s – ‘Only a Pawn in their Game’ – which suggested that Byron was a pawn being used by the senior faceless supremacists who were terrorising people for their own ends.

 

Freedom has been bought with blood! It is always hard to gain and easy to give away!

The murder of the last witch in Scotland.

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In the 1740s the meek and mild followers of gentle Jesus who resided in the hamlet of Knockdoor in Scotland barbarically killed the last witch. The old lady was dragged from her house given a rigged trial in a kangaroo court and murdered in the most cruel manner they Christians could devise.

There was no turning of the other cheek, no love, peace and understanding, no taking of beams from their own eyes, but instead was a lot of casting of the first stones.

The evidence for this ghastly institutionalised crime was that she had turned her own daughter into a pony and had ridden her around town.

She was publicly tried for the offence and the clincher was that she stumbled over a word when reciting the Lord’s Prayer in Gaelic.

The sentence was death.

This evil witch was then dragged out by the mob and plunged into a barrel of boiling tar and set alight.

I cannot imagine what it would feel like to be thrust into boiling tar. I think I might have preferred crucifixion.

All the good Christian town-folk came to gloat over their neighbour’s agonies, argue over her possessions and rejoice that another evil witch was gone. It was probably the daughter who inherited the house and pony!

It sounds dreadful but our meek and mild followers of the Saviour of love did away with an estimated 2 million witches in Europe.

It has a lot of resonance with what is going on with ISIS burning pilots in metal cages, beheading, burying alive, crucifying, stoning, pressing and delighting in torture and cruelty.

Theocracy is great isn’t it?  The wonder is that anybody questions why I’m a confirmed Antitheist!

I think we need to build a more positive zeitgeist than anything religion can provide. Their history does not look good!